Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Today Was A Good Day

Despite BOTH kids waking up just past 6am, which is ungodly early for all of us (yes I know this wake up time is usual for some of you) it turned out to be a good day. For starters, the kids went back to sleep after George left for work so I was able to squeeze in another hour of shut eye and cuddling with Charlie Murph. Then, Nate and I got some more boxes broken down and packing paper bagged up. Olivia wanted cereal for lunch. As I was preparing it, she was jumping around the kitchen saying, "It's good. It's crunchy. It's milky!" She is her mother's daughter. I would eat cereal all day long. In fact, I was so excited to discover a restaurant in Philly called Cereality, that serves only cold cereal, and lots of it. Can't wait to visit there. That's one of those crazy ideas someone had then found the money to make it come true. The dude was probably sitting around stoned with his frat brothers "Man, I love cereal. If I owned restaurant, all I would sell is cereal." (Not to imply that the only people who smoke marajuana are fraternity members.) George thinks someone should sell cereal flavored milk, since that is his favorite part of the experience. They sell cereal straws, so why wouldn't cereal milk be a hit? Cookie-Crisp milk would be my choice. Yours?

Anyways, I'm still ultra frustrated that I can't find the iron. I found just about everything else that was in the laundry room. I'm sure the iron got packed in a box with the stereo or something random like that. The good news is...


Yep, after several technical measurements, decisions about how to approach the doorway, removal of door and the feet off the couch, George squeezed it in! I think the movers were just too lazy to bother with it. I was stressing about what to do with the couch and how to find/afford a new couch that would fit in the house, so this was a great relief to me! I told George he was my hero, and Olivia agreed, saying he was our "Super Hero." I think I'll take him out for a bowl of good, crunchy, milky cereal.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Home Sweet Home

Wherever you go, as long as you're with family, you're home.

The movers arrived on Tuesday but couldn't get the big truck up the driveway so they spent Tuesday unloading onto a smaller truck and we actually started moving in on Wednesday. The kids did really well and I did my best to keep them out of the way. Olivia was excited to see some of her toys and her big girl bed being brought in. Nate was most interested in helping Pat, the driver, put tables back together. He sat right in the middle of the table while Pat attached the legs, concentrating very intently on the screwdriver and the mechanics of the process.

All moved in but not nearly unpacked. At least I have enough out of boxes to function on a very basic level. I was in an unpacking frenzy on Thursday and wore myself out. I've been avoiding the rest of the boxes all weekend unless there's something I absolutely have to find (like silverware). We are very happy to be in our own space again, even if it is a chaotic mess. I thought I might include some pictures of the extended stay we were in for 10 very long days, and then contrast that with some pictures of our new home.

As you can see in the last picture, Olivia was getting bored in that hotel room and found all sorts of ways to get in trouble. She had a lot of fun riding the elevator and helping me do laundry though.

Here are several pictures of our new place which is located in Fort Washington, PA.

Going up the driveway.

Looking down the side yard to the back yard.

View from our back door.

The back of the house.

Up the stairs like a big girl.

One of two storage areas behind bedroom closets.
Olivia has coined these her "hidey holes" and loves to play in there.

Having fun with packing paper. These two kids were giggling and
splashing around in the paper like they were in the ball pit at McD's.
I wish all this packing paper made me feel like giggling.

We picked up Charlie in Harrisburg on Thursday night. George's friend Jess was flying in from Hamilton to see her family and she checked Charlie with her. He appears to have done well on the flight and is happy to be back with his people. We took him to a local dog park tonite and he had a lot of fun. We met a nice couple there with their two dogs and little boy. We gave them our phone number and hope we get to meet up with them again!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Zoo Zaniness

On Saturday we visited Elmwood Park Zoo, which is just a few miles from where we're staying. It's a quaint local zoo that's a good little excursion for small children. One of the first things we saw was Olivia's Eagle Canyon.

There was also face painting and pony rides. Olivia rode Rayne like a pro, posing for a pretty picture at the end of the ride.

We also had fun in the petting barn. The goats were really friendly. We saw alpacas and sheep too.

It was nice to spend some time outside enjoying one of the many local attractions. A cherished few hours of normalcy in what has been a week or so of what seems like total chaos. The movers arrive tomorrow and we are looking VERY forward to getting settled in our new home.

Friday, September 19, 2008

A Sigh of Relief


Things have calmed down considerably here. We found a place to live outside the city in Fort Washington, PA. It's very close to Fort Washington State Park, where George Washington camped before heading to Valley Forge. Quaint little town with easy access to the turnpike. George will be about 20 minutes from work. The movers should be here on the 23rd, and the Hamilton house has been cleaned and is ready for the new tenants. Charlie is flying in on the 25th with our friend Jess who is headed here to visit family. We miss our scruffy pup but he's been having lots of fun with Liz and her 4 dogs. He'll have a great big yard to run in and he'll feel right at home with the deer that frequent our yard, just like in Montana.

George took us to the King of Prussia mall last night after visiting a local park. We only made it through the smaller part, The Court, before the kids pooped out. Darn! I guess that means we'll have to go back soon! The Plaza has a MAC store AND a Sephora! Nirvana.

I've also been applying for some jobs. There are several hospitals in the area, and a few even had Exercise Physiologist positions available. I'm also going to try and visit a few of the cardiac rehab departments to do some networking and get my resume in front of the right people. Ideally, I'd like to go back just a couple days a week.

Last but not least, our first visitor is scheduled to arrive on Halloween! Kathy is ready to get spooky with us and sample some Philly Cheese Steaks. I hear the best are at Pat's. We'll be checking that out for sure. We are looking very forward to Cookie's visit, and we're so glad we're just a QUICK (compared to MT) plane ride away now.

Next week is sure to be a busy one - move in, unpack, buy a car for George, and my first outing with my new mom's group. Hopefully everything goes off without a hitch. I'll email everyone our new address and phone number soon!

Friday, September 05, 2008

Friday to Philly

A week from today we'll be on a plane heading towards Philadelphia. It seems hard to believe. I knew the time would fly by but it really doesn't seem possible that we only have a week left here. I'm excited, but having sporadic moments of sadness like, "this is the last gallon of milk I'll buy in Montana" or "the last time we'll have breakfast at the Coffee Cup." My moms group is having a "Boo Hoo" party for me on Sunday, which seems like a contradiction of terms now that I look at it! Anyways, I hope I don't get too emotional leaving all my friends and the town we've come to really love.

Our flight leaves Missoula at 7:30am so we'll be in a hotel up there Thursday night. We're routed through Seattle with a 6 hour layover. When George informed me of this I threw several expletives around regarding the idiotic relocation person that decided 6 hours in an airport with two small children is a good idea. I slept on it though, and decided this morning that we'd make the best of it, rent a car for the morning and go visit some old friends and coworkers while we're there. I even baited George with lunch at our favorite Thai restaurant up in Ballard. It didn't take him too long to jump on board. After an early lunch we'll head back to the airport for a 1:40 departure, and are scheduled to arrive in the City of Brotherly Love at 9:45 that night.

We still don't know where we'll be staying. The same lovely relocation "expert" booked us a room at a Springhill Suites for two weeks where the "kitchenette" only has a microwave. George left a message for her yesterday explaining that we could not feed two small children for two weeks with just a microwave and could you please kindly put us up in the apartment you had arranged for us earlier, or at least a hotel with a REAL kitchenette, complete with stove and fridge?

So, that's the update. We're keeping busy with our "to do" lists so at least we feel in control of something.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Happy 1st Birthday Nate!

We had a Wild West themed party for our little buckaroo on Sunday when Josh, Amanda and Aiden were visiting. He got to enjoy his very own cake (Olivia helped him blow out his candle and sang a great version of "Hap-py Birf-fay" dear Nathan) and the rest of us cowpokes had a cactus cupcake or two. He really likes all his new toys and it's finally starting to look like a little boy lives here...a tee ball toy, farm and dump truck handle haulers, a toolbench, a very soft stuffed frog and Lightning McQueen outfit, plus some gift cards we're waiting to use when we get to Philly.

Here he is digging in. Not quite sure what to do with the cake at first...but the video shows, he gets the hang of it in no time!

The aftermath...

I had to take the highchair apart and wash it in the shower after Nate had his bath. There was chocolate cake all over the floor and even on the window and windowsill. It was worth it though, to see him have so much fun.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Moving Mania!

We are in full relocation mode now and many of our "to dos" are getting checked off the list. George's last day of work is Sept 1th and we're hoping to fly out on the 11th. The Expedition will be shipped on the 10th or 11th and the movers should be here by the 15th. Our neighbor, Ruth, is supervising the car transport, moving company, and house cleaning for us since we won't be there to do it. His first day of work is Monday the 15th so we'll be in temporary housing for about a week until our stuff arrives in Philly. That gives us some time to find a place to rent.

Charlie is the proud owner of a new FAA approved kennel, complete with orthopedic mat to make his flight more comfortable. We sold the Corolla on Saturday and my next task is to remove anything from the house that we don't want packed and either donate or dispose of it. I'll have plenty to keep myself busy over the next two weeks and George's "honey do" list is growing longer and longer too. Ahh, the joys of moving.

At least I don't have to do any major packing, beyond what we'll need in Philly until the moving truck arrives. It should be quite an "adventure" with two little ones in temporary housing for a week to ten days. I'm sure we'll be busy exploring so that will make the time fly by.

We'll be in a new time zone in a few weeks. I'll keep you updated as the move progresses!